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May 7, 2014 1:47 pm

Israel’s Foreign Currency Reserves Reach Record $86 Billion at End-April

avatar by Joshua Levitt

Bank of Israel, Jerusalem. Photo: Ester Inbar.

Israel’s foreign currency reserves climbed to a record $86.5 billion at the end of April, up $921 million from March, the Bank of Israel said.

Reserves stood at $81.8 billion at the end of 2013 and $75.9 billion at the end of 2012, Israel’s Globes business daily reported on Wednesday. In 2004, Israel held only $25 billion.

Economists have said the strength of the Israeli economy has been boosted by large profits from Israel’s high-tech community, second only to Silicon Valley in terms of world leadership, and growth in the energy business from the large natural gas finds off of Israel’s Mediterranean coast.

An example of that was also announced on Wednesday, with the owners of the Tamar natural gas field agreeing to sell $1.3 billion worth of gas annually to Spanish energy group Union Fenosa for export to Europe from its Egyptian port infrastructure. The deal, which they said could be formalized within the next six months, would be worth nearly $20 billion over the next 15 years.

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